The men’s lacrosse team will take a break this weekend from its grueling conference schedule for an intrastate rivalry game, but that doesn’t necessarily mean things will get any easier.
Coming off close losses to No. 2 Princeton and No. 11 Brown, the Bulldogs (4-5, 1-3 Ivy) welcome Fairfield to Reese Stadium for a 7 p.m. contest on Saturday night.
The Elis let a 9-6 third quarter get away from them last Saturday at Brown, as the Bears scored seven straight goals to end the game with a 13-9 win. Attackers Brendan Gibson ’10 and Michael Karwoski ’09, and middie Matt Miller ’12 each scored twice for the away squad.
Yale dominated Brown on the stat sheet with considerable advantages in shots on goal, ground balls and face-offs won, but was held scoreless in the final 25 minutes of the game as the Bears mounted their comeback. The late letdown saw the Elis continue their recent tendency to stick with some of the nation’s best teams, yet ultimately fade away late in the game.
“The thing about playing top 10 opponents is that you really have to follow the plan and execute late in the game,” head coach Andy Shay said. “If you don’t, a ranked team like Fairfield will exploit that. You need to clear, get ground balls, run the offense and communicate on defense in the fourth quarter in order to finish the game. We know that this is the problem, and we are learning how to do this. That’s the great thing about playing our schedule, it’s a huge challenge every week. This is yet another game where we need to play four quarters.”
All five of Yale’s losses this season have come against ranked opponents.
The Stags (6-3, 3-1) had been ranked in the USILA Coaches Poll last week, but they now sit just outside of the top 20 after an 11-8 defeat at the hands of No. 19 Georgetown last weekend. The loss snapped what had been a four game winning streak.
Yale has won every one of its five all-time meetings with Fairfield. This is the first time the two teams will meet at Reese Stadium.